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Florida Sheriffs Association Allocates $150,000 for Bulletproof Vest Grant Program to Sheriffs’ Offices Statewide

January 30, 2024

The Florida Sheriffs Association (FSA) is pleased to announce $150,000 in grant funding available to Florida sheriffs through the Bulletproof Vest Grant Program. These dollars were approved by the FSA Board of Directors to provide small and medium-sized offices with bulletproof vests, panels and carriers. Among the various contributions to the program, the Moss Foundation generously donated $50,000 to support the FSA’s mission of enhancing the safety of Florida’s deputies, marine patrol and K-9s as they serve and protect our communities.

“Bulletproof vests not only provide extra protection for our frontline protectors, but they also boost confidence, ensuring that their safety is a top priority,” said Florida Sheriffs Association President and Nassau County Sheriff Bill Leeper. “Budgetary constraints should never compromise the safety of Florida’s dedicated deputies. These brave men and women should feel secure and valued in their mission to keep our communities safe, and providing these vests is an expression of our commitment to them.” 

According to the Florida Sheriffs Risk Management Fund, there have been more than 3,100 instances of officers’ lives being saved by body armor since it was introduced in the 1970s. Bulletproof vests are expensive to supply, with some units costing up to $1,000 each. By supplying equipment to counties that face fiscal constraints, the FSA is actively working to protect the lives of law enforcement personnel. Since the establishment of this unique grant opportunity in 2020, more than $1,112,930 of FSA funds have been provided to sheriffs’ offices, which has resulted in 1,255 vests, panels and carriers.

This year, the $150,000 in Bulletproof Vest Grant Awards will provide 195 vests, panels and carriers to these 16 sheriffs’ offices:

  • Bradford County Sheriff’s Office
  • Calhoun County Sheriff’s Office
  • Columbia County Sheriff’s Office
  • Franklin County Sheriff’s Office
  • Gilchrist County Sheriff’s Office
  • Glades County Sheriff’s Office
  • Hendry County Sheriff’s Office
  • Highlands County Sheriff’s Office
  • Holmes County Sheriff’s Office
  • Jackson County Sheriff’s Office
  • Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office
  • Levy County Sheriff’s Office
  • Okeechobee County Sheriff’s Office
  • Putnam County Sheriff’s Office
  • Taylor County Sheriff’s Office
  • Wakulla County Sheriff’s Office

“We extend our appreciation to our generous donors for their invaluable contributions to the Bulletproof Vest Grant Program. As a Florida sheriff whose life was saved by a protective vest when I was shot as a young deputy sheriff, these contributions enable us to provide sheriffs’ offices with life-saving equipment, promoting equal access to essential protection throughout the state of Florida,” said  Flagler County Sheriff Rick Staly, FSA Chairman of the Board.

Grants are largely made possible by the outstanding support of FSA members. FSA is a membership-driven and mission-focused organization. FSA members show their tangible support to Florida’s sheriffs, deputies, correctional officers, and other personnel who work tirelessly to keep Florida’s communities safe. 


About Florida Sheriffs Association
The Florida Sheriffs Association is a not-for-profit 501(c)3 corporation made up of the Sheriffs of Florida, approximately 3,000 business leaders and 100,000 citizens throughout the state. Founded in 1893, FSA has steadfastly served the citizens of Florida by supporting the needs of the state’s law enforcement community. Through the Florida Sheriffs Association, Sheriffs are given a forum to address lawmakers to push for positive changes in Florida’s public safety arena. FSA also provides Sheriffs’ Offices much-needed programs such as affordable training, special task forces and legislative and legal services. Dedicated to the prevention of juvenile delinquency and the development of lawful, productive citizens, FSA has established and funded the Florida Sheriffs Youth Ranches with facilities throughout the state to help restore hope, fulfill dreams, and prepare boys and girls for the future. It has grown to be one of the largest and most successful state law enforcement associations in the nation. For more information on the Florida Sheriffs Association, visit